How To Become A CDL Truck Driver Before ELDT – JUST GET YOUR CDL PERMIT

How To Quickly Become A CDL Truck Driver Before ELDT - CDL school news

Do you want to become a truck driver before the ELDT rule kicks in?

Just get your CDL permit now as the ELDT rule went into effect Feb 7th, 2022.

Otherwise, you will be required to have theory training covering 30+ topics beyond learning to physically drive a truck.

A CDL permit will give you a 12-month window to receive training and pass your CDL skills test, without the extra theory courses.

We will help you understand:

  • the ELDT rule
  • the requirements the ELDT rule will initiate
  • avoiding the extra ELDT CDL training
  • the CDL permit expiration date

What is the ELDT rule?

On February 7, 2022, entry-level CDL trainees will have much stricter requirements to:

  • obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL)
  • upgrade a CDL, or
  • obtain a passenger (P), school bus (S) or hazardous materials (H) endorsement

The new CDL training requirements were brought on as a result of  inconsistent CDL training standards across different states. This caused many new drivers to lack the skills they need while on the road.

If you decide to wait until next year, the Entry-Level Driver Training (ELDT) rule will require an entry-level driver to complete a prescribed program of theory and behind-the-wheel instruction from a school or other entity listed on FMCSA’s TPR before taking their CDL test.

Any company that trains entry-level drivers to get their CDL for the first time is subject to the ELDT rule, including private fleets.

This includes:

  • for-profit CDL schools
  • CDL tutors
  • non-profit community colleges
  • local trade organizations
  • private fleets running dock-to-driver programs, and
  • over-the-road fleets with their own internal CDL schools

Why will it be harder to get your CDL after the ELDT rule goes live?

Under these new requirements, an entry-level driver must successfully complete a prescribed program of theory that covers 30+ areas of course topics.

These include:

  • Designation
  • Visual Search
  • Speed Management
  • Post-Crash Procedures
  • Orientation
  • Communications
  • Space Management
  • Maintenance
  • Control Systems/Dashboard
  • Jackknifing & Other Emergencies
  • Handling & Documenting Cargo
  • Hours of Service Requirements
  • Pre & Post-Trip Inspections
  • Railroad-Highway Grade Crossings
  • Environmental Compliance Issues
  • Fatigue & Wellness Awareness
  • Basic Control
  • Distracted Driving
  • Trip Planning
  • Roadside Inspections
  • Medical Requirements
  • Extreme Driving Conditions
  • Whistleblower/Coercion
  • External Communications
  • Backing & Docking
  • Night Operation
  • Hazard Perception
  • Skid Control/Recovery
  • Coupling & Uncoupling
  • Identification & Diagnosis of Malfunctions
  • Shifting/Operating Transmissions
  • Drugs & Alcohol

While there is no specific number of hours needed in theory training, driver trainees must demonstrate “proficiency” by passing theory curriculum with a score 80% or higher before taking the CDL test.

If you are not great at taking tests or do not want to have hours of classroom-style training, we recommend getting your CDL before the rule goes live.

What can I do now to avoid the extra ELDT training?

If you are serious about becoming a truck driver, all you need to do is get your Commercial Driver’s Instruction Permit (CDIP) now, before the ELDT rule goes into effect Feb 7th, 2022.

The CDL permit allows you to drive any motor vehicle on a highway if your trainer has a CDL licensed for that type of vehicle and are sitting directly beside you during the training.  

To obtain a CDL permit, you must meet the following requirements:

  • 18 years or older 
  • Hold a valid Class D license (license to operate any non-commercial vehicle), or are holding a ‘junior operator’s license’, for at least two years
  • Pass a vision test
  • Pass a commercial driver instruction permit test

Once you receive your permit, you have 12 months, or until Jan 2023 if receive the permit in January 2022, to pass the CDL skills test without the extra theory training.

Now is the time to receive one-on-one CDL training with CNS Driver Training Center and get your CDL license.

If you are considering out-of-state CDL training from where you received your CDL permit, follow these steps:

  1. Take the written test for your CDL Permit in your home state
  2. Travel to another state for CDL Training or Skills Test while your home state CLP is still valid
  3. Take the CDL skills test in their state
  4. You will then go home to obtain your CDL license as the passing results of your skills test are transmitted via the AAMVA CSTIMS portal from the out of state testing agency to your home state’s DMV who then issue you a CDL in your home state. Note: Your home state is required to issue a CDL based upon the test results from another State.

Learn more about all levels of truck driver training and CDL permit test preparation that we offer at our CNS Driver Training Center.

If you have questions about our CDL training packages, give us a call at 717-496-9145 or email us at

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